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R.I.S.E. Project

LinkedIn Learning

The Learning Academy’s Innovative Pedagogies Series

Staff Spotlight: Operations Training Center

Faculty Focus Live Podcast

Lindenwood is on the R.I.S.E.!


At the Lindenwood Learning Academy, we believe that course design and class cultures characterized by rigor, inclusiveness, support, and engagement elevate learning for students of all backgrounds, abilities, identities, life circumstances, and levels of preparedness. The R.I.S.E. Project, which launches in August, is an academic initiative that seeks to establish a shared framework for effective teaching and learning and to support faculty in enhancing rigor, inclusiveness, support, and engagement in their courses. During the 2021-22 academic year, the Office of the Provost and the Learning Academy will partner with deans and designated faculty to bring R.I.S.E. Roundtables, Student Spotlights, and R.I.S.E. Resources to faculty across campus.

Learn more about the R.I.S.E. Project

R.I.S.E. Scholars – apply by May 14th

To bring the R.I.S.E. framework to faculty, each academic college will have a faculty member who serves as a R.I.S.E. Scholar – a resident expert, discussion leader, and consultant who provides support to colleagues. R.I.S.E. Scholars will facilitate discussions, share research regarding how each R.I.S.E. characteristic improves student outcomes, and lead exploration of teaching strategies that boost rigor, inclusiveness, support, and engagement. R.I.S.E. Scholars will be available to discuss ideas, suggest resources, share materials, observe classes, review Canvas courses, collect informal feedback from students, and to support their colleagues in learning and applying relevant pedagogical strategies. Scholars will receive course releases and stipends.


Interested in being a R.I.S.E. Scholar? Please carefully review the scholar responsibilities, benefits, characteristics, and application requirements here.

R.I.S.E. Roundtables and Student Spotlights

R.I.S.E. Roundtable discussions about rigor, inclusiveness, support, and engagement will take place within college faculty meetings throughout the 2021-22 academic year. We’ll focus on rigor and inclusiveness in the Fall semester and support and engagement in the Spring semester. Led by the college’s R.I.S.E. Scholar, discussions will entail an exploration of the characteristic, related research, and research-based teaching and learning strategies to enhance the characteristic in course design and/or instruction. Additionally, student spotlight presentations in full faculty meetings will help to illuminate the experiences and needs of various student populations.

R.I.S.E. Resources

For those who want to learn more beyond roundtable sessions or who cannot attend faculty meetings, R.I.S.E. resources will be available on-demand. Faculty are also invited to form professional learning communities to spend more time learning alongside and from colleagues and will be able to find resources for this.

R.I.S.E. Research Study

The Learning Academy will be designing a research study focused on connecting faculty development to student learning and related student outcomes. For this study, we will need faculty members to be involved both as research participants and as co-creators of knowledge to help us discover if and how changes to pedagogy impact student learning and student experiences. We envision this research project as a collaborative basis for exploring grant funding, scholarly presentation, and publication in this area.

R.I.S.E. Recognition

At the close of the academic year, the Learning Academy R.I.S.E. Awards will recognize faculty who have shown remarkable dedication to designing courses and creating classroom cultures that include and inspire all students.

LinkedIn Learning: How to Set Goals When Everything Feels Like a Priority

Sometimes it can feel like you’re working on everyone's else's to-do list instead of your own. How can you make space for accomplishing the goals that are important to you? Join best-selling business author and consultant Dorie Clark as she shares practical advice on how to prioritize effectively so that you can get meaningful things done.

Dorie shares techniques that you can leverage to get clarity on what to prioritize, as well as how to take action when you find yourself unsure of your next steps. She explores well-known frameworks, including the Eisenhower matrix and the Pareto principle, that can help you become more effective. Along the way, she shares how to find the motivation to get yourself going, maintain your momentum, and make it all the way to your goal.


The Eisenhower Matrix 

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The Learning Academy’s Innovative Pedagogies Series

This semester, we are using the Innovative Pedagogies series to spotlight faculty who are using unique or cutting-edge strategies or tools in their course design, assignments, or classroom instruction to facilitate exceptional learning experiences for students. We hope that hearing about what your colleagues are doing will inspire you to try something new or to share your own innovative pedagogical approach!

This month, we hear from Vanessa VanderGraaf, Associate Professor of Teacher Education, about her use of the tool, Adobe Spark.

Adobe Spark

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A eureka of discovery awaits on the Library and Academic Resource Center’s (LARC) third floor and known as the Media and Gaming Lab. The Media and Gaming Lab is a dynamic, multi-use space for experimentation and creation. In the spring of 2019, we had a team working on the restructure of the Master of Arts in Teaching Program. My role was to redesign the initial course, Foundations of Kindergarten through Twelfth Grade Education, which helps prepare learners for traditional and innovative professional roles in education.  

Serendipity can be a professor’s best friend, especially if one does not know precisely what they are seeking. For this initial course, I wanted to couple the art of telling stories with multimedia. The soundproofed audio recording studio in the Media and Gaming Lab allowed me to indulge in experimentation and performance. After exploring multiple media creation applications, Adobe Spark offered basic digital storytelling principles most compellingly. Adobe Spark is a web-based application that allows one to create radical video presentations (among other things). To heighten learners’ engagement with course content, I incorporated authentic learning tasks with inquiry-based learning to connect real-world relevance and content knowledge. To get started with Adobe Spark, sign up for a new Adobe Spark account and this free online course offered by Adobe Education Exchange

There is no one way to redesign a program or course. Above all, if you adore the field of your expertise, the adventure of discovery is the most excellent outcome. 

Vanessa VanderGraaf 

Adobe Spark allows you and your students to create highly engaging and professional quality videos as well as web pages and social graphics. Interested? View a quick overview video about the program. 

Staff Spotlight: Operations Training Center

Over the past year Jeff Cramer and the facilities team converted some space into an operations training room. Current trainings focus on how on-call employees can address issues without having to call in additional staff during off-hours. Training like this will ensure Q2 service excellence is provided to students and employees when they encounter challenges. 

Specifically, in March, John Robbin and David Powell led a training for the team; they discussed the most common door/lock issues that they may experience while on call. In the past, the on-call employee would have to call off duty employees for advice or ask them to come assist with certain issues. Based on this training and others, on-duty employees should be able to handle these calls without assistance.

Jeff plans is to have multiple trainings each month. Each training will be based on making sure the entire department has a base level of skills. Once that base level skills are attained by the entire department, they will move to advanced skill development. 

Podcast to Inspire your Teaching

If you like to have something to listen to while you’re driving, cooking, or exercising, you might be interested in the new Faculty Focus Live podcast. Their latest episode is called Finding the Missing Piece: How to Help Your Students Who are Struggling with Online Learning

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Lindenwood Learning Academy

LARC 009

209 S. Kingshighway

St. Charles, MO 63301


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